The numeric character 3 represents the emergence of the plural and the first idea of multiplicity.
The 3 rises from the 2. It is symbolic of creation and the basic human social structure: the Mother, the Father and the Child. It speaks of the religious belief that we were created in the image of our creator. This is expressed in the Trinity: the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. The first example of this can be found in the Sumerian culture that thrived from 3200 – 2360 B.C.. This may have been the first culture to divide their Godhead into a trinity of Gods: Enlil, Lord of the Sky, Anu, Lord of the Heavens and Enki, Lord of the Earth.
However, the 3 goes back much further in our history. Cavemen believed that the spirit that gave us life came from the center of the earth. With the exception of protection from the elements and predators, cavemen lived in caves in order to be as close to that spirit as possible. So, the mouth of cave is symbolic of that spirit. The mouth of cave is the earliest symbol to reflect that belief. That is why the best symbol for 3 is the triangle. It is the entrance to realm of the spirit of life.
In our human culture we see the 3 becoming something in the nature of a law. The 3’s in human cultures are endless: 3 tries, 3 wishes, 3 fates, 3 princes or princesses, 3 Magi bearing three gifts, and so on. It is also reflected in the human life cycle: Birth, Life and Death.
The 3 is symbolic of the number of Heaven, the Creator of our universe and of the process of creation. It represents power and good luck. It is the number of the Psychic and of contact with another plane of existence. The best symbol for the three is the equal triangle that is created by the joining of three straight lines.
The 3 brings rise to the number 4 which will be the topic of my next post.
© 2015 Cheri Mancuso and John Scarano The contents of this post may be used only by express permission of the authors.